How To Tell If the Home Needs Air Duct Repair or Replacement
Most people probably don’t give a lot of thought to the air ducts in their homes. After all, they’re designed to be out of sight and out of mind. But when they get damaged or spring a leak, it can cause some major problems that are hard to ignore, affecting everything from system performance and energy efficiency to indoor air quality and comfort levels. That’s why it’s so important to address problems with the ductwork as soon as possible. So this article will discuss a few signs that air ducts might be damaged and what repairing or replacing them entails.
Common Signs of Air Duct Damage
Since air ducts are generally tucked away in crawl spaces or attics, damaged ductwork is usually easier to detect by observing the symptoms rather than examining the ducts themselves. There are a few different symptoms to watch out for.
Poor airflow may indicate a leak, obstruction, or crushed section in the ducts. Similarly, hot or cold spots throughout the house or rooms with drastically different temperatures often indicate damaged or leaky ducts. Noises like rattling or whistling often accompany duct damage, as loose joints vibrate or air escapes through gaps. Strange odors from the air vents can point to leaks, mold growth, or rodent infestation in the ductwork. Unexpected increases in the electric bill might reflect the loss of energy efficiency caused by duct damage.
Benefits of Replacing the Air Ducts
If the ducts are old (15 years+) or falling apart, the homeowners will likely be better off replacing them entirely rather than repairing them. Old, outdated air ducts may also be incorrectly sized for today’s HVAC systems - this is a fairly common issue when replacing an AC unit or furnace in an older home.
Homeowners can benefit from air duct replacement in many ways. They will likely notice a significant performance increase as air circulates more effectively, without losing much of its coolness (or heat in the winter). This will also translate to greater energy efficiency, which in turn will make for lower utility bills. New ducts can also help reduce the noise level of the HVAC system in the home.
How Air Duct Repair Works
If an all-out air duct replacement isn’t necessary (if there are only a few small leaks in the system and the ductwork isn’t old enough to justify replacing), then duct repair is a viable option to seal leaks.
HVAC professionals typically use one of three methods (or a combination of them) to repair leaky air ducts - metallic tape, mastic sealant, or Aeroseal. Metallic tape is just what it sounds like - heavy-duty foil tape designed to stand heat and pressure, which is applied over the leak to form a seal. Mastic sealant is a kind of epoxy that is pasted over gaps or connections, forming a durable airtight seal once it hardens. Aeroseal is an aerosol-based sealant sprayed into the duct system to seal leaks from the inside.
The method used depends on the type of ductwork and the nature of the damage. The homeowners can do some, but for best results and to ensure that every leak is sealed, it’s best to call a professional to perform the duct repairs.
About Easco Air Conditioning and Heating
The family-owned Easco Air Conditioning and Heating has served The Woodlands with pride since 1983. Their trustworthy licensed experts always arrive in fully-stocked trucks and keep the customer in the loop every step, so they can return to their normal routine quickly and without surprises. Call them today for air duct repair in The Woodlands, TX!